•The criteria was highly criticised by aspirants seeking to to take over the reigns at Kandanda House and consequently formed the basis for the Sports Disputes Tribunal to nullify the elections on March 17.
•While releasing the roadmap to the polls set to be conducted September 18th at the County level and a month later at the national level, the board's chairperson Kentice Tikolo announced that her office had adopted Fifa's eligibility code
Candidates eyeing to oust Football Kenya Federation (FKF) president Nick Mwendwa can afford a smile after the Electoral Board amended the eligibility criteria initially deemed unfair.
The criteria was highly criticised by aspirants seeking to take over the reigns at Kandanda House and consequently formed the basis for the Sports Disputes Tribunal to nullify the elections on March 17.
“The eligibility criteria— Section 4 of the 2020 Electoral Code— is unreasonable and designed to lock out potential aspirants. It is, therefore, a gross violation of the principle of free and fair elections contemplated by section 46 (6) as read with paragraph (d) of the second schedule to the Sports Act and Article 81 of the Constitution of Kenya,” read in part of the tribunal's ruling.
While releasing the roadmap for the polls set for September 17 at the county level and a month later at the national level, the board's chairperson, Kentice Tikolo, announced that her office had adopted part of Fifa's eligibility code in the interest of fairness. However, the voter register was maintained with sub-branches still locked out of the exercise.
“Due regard has been placed on the requisite minimum qualifications for the candidates and so as to achieve the inclusivity and participation to the greatest extend possible,the Independent Electoral Board adopts the eligibility criterion set out in article 27 of the Fifa statutes and in line with the Fifa standard Electoral Code and the FKF statutes,” said Tikolo in a statement.
Aspirants are required to have at least five endorsements from any FKF member; be a Kenyan by birth and satisfy the requirement for leadership and integrity set out in Chapter Six of the 2010 Constitution.
The board was forced to whittle down the requirement which demanded aspirants to have been involved in the game from three to two years.
The board resumed its duties following a letter from Zurich last week which asked them to share the road-map as soon as possible.
However, despite rolling their sleeves,eight aspirants warned the board to desist from planning the polls, claiming that they did not powers to issue any regulations or road-map on FKF elections.
The eight are Sam Nyamweya, Lodvick Aduda, Alex Ole Magelo, Michael Esakwa, Steve Mburu, Twaha Mbarak, Angeline Mwikali and Nicholas Musonye.
However, Tikolo denied being served with the demands from the eight who also wanted her to refrain from issuing the roadmap yesterday.
“Our mandate is drawn from FKF and Fifa and that is why we are following their statutes. I have not received any warnings and I am proceeding with my duties. If something comes up again, we will leave that to the dispute resolution mechanisms and an appeals board,” she said.
Meanwhile,Tom Alila who is pursuing to succeed Mwendwa threatened to head to the tribunal should the board fail to update the voter register.
He also called on Tikolo's office to convene a meeting with all aspirants to iron out the burning issues. "I welcome the dates for the elections but I will not hesitate to go to the tribunal if the register is not updated and the sub-branches are locked out," he said.